Licht: “Draft Is Our Main Meal Ticket”

January 12th, 2018

Time to eat

Jason Licht remains commander in chief of Buccaneers football operations because of his work through four NFL Drafts.

Lichts’ inaugural 2014 draft was just ok, 2015 was a grand slam, 2016 looks brutal, and 2017’s impressive haul proved Licht is no one-hit wonder when it comes to picking college players.

The Bucs are in good hands when April rolls around.

It’s March when Licht needs a makeover. When the free agency dinner bell rings, that’s when many Bucs fans hide under the covers or head to Abe’s Place for the best beer selection west of Tampa Bay. When March free agency rolls around, not May or August, sometimes Joe thinks Licht would be best served by taking a page from Opposite George.

Anyway, during his recent chat on the Buccaneers Radio Network, Licht hinted that success in the draft will drive the Bucs where they want to go.

“The draft is our main meal ticket to success in the future,” Licht said.

Just imagine if Licht can find a way to select a solid and promising defensive end (think Adrian Clayborn’s rookie year) and score a running back with real juice to team with Peyton Barber. Heck, 2018 draft successes in those areas alone could make the Bucs a playoff contender. And that’s just two players.

Obviously, a healthy chunk of this Bucs roster will be retooled before training camp by various means. But the draft will be the key, especially as it appears coaching changes won’t happen and it’s unlikely the Bucs go totally wild in free agency.

75 Responses to “Licht: “Draft Is Our Main Meal Ticket””

  1. Aristotle Says:

    DL or OLine or a Corner! Stop drafting positions we don’t need!

  2. Broy34 Says:

    We’ll look this way. Atleast he has said we need pass rush. That’s good. Not that worked up about running back as well all know barber is serviceable. Fix the lines first then address that. And yes I know jameis needs a running game

  3. tmaxcon Says:

    no mr licht the glazers main meal ticket is the tv contract. until glazers start caring about the on field product more than the tv money the bucs will remain permanent residents of the basement that is there comfort zone

  4. rrsrq Says:

    We need to really hit at least a triple (find some gems in the later round that can play o-line and corner, if we miss out on Nelson.

  5. sj_bucsfan Says:

    Must Rebuild Trenches!

  6. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    In regard to CB…if Grimes stays we may not be that bad off. VHIII had a bad year, but that doesn’t mean he’s a bust. And our other young guy improved. (Evans? Brain fart here)

  7. Bucsfanman Says:

    Say it with me now……

  8. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I say DE and DT are important.

    McCoy is getting older, and the time has come to consider him a bridge player.

  9. Robert Says:

    We need to blow this team up!!! 1st one traded is 93, then D. Jax, then JW aka crabbypatty, then Metoo Mike Evans, trade the early picks and actually go after guys who with something to pove, character and above average skills. The me too guys can come on the back end when we actually have a team who only needs a couple of pieces. Those guys are nothing more than hired guns ans should be treated as such. milk them until you don’t need them or their value is greater outside the organization and trade them for someone on the way up.

    Whats the point of having a few play makers when you don’t have a team with any balls, any motivization. Those few so called play makers are “untouchable” and demoralize the rest of the team if the team is not winning and those guys are not teaching/giving back.

  10. SteveK Says:

    It all starts up front!

    NFL DRAFT GAME 2018Logged in as: SteveK

    Your score is: 19516 (GRADE: B+)

    Your Picks:
    Round 1 Pick 7: Orlando Brown, OT, Oklahoma (A+)
    Round 2 Pick 6: Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame (A+)
    Round 3 Pick 5: Will Hernandez, OG, Texas-El Paso (A)
    Round 4 Pick 8: Tyquan Lewis, DE, Ohio State (A+)
    Round 5 Pick 7: Marcus Davenport, DE, Texas-San Antonio (A+)
    Round 6 Pick 6: Justin Lawler, DE, Southern Methodist (A)
    Round 6 Pick 29: P. J. Hall, DT, Sam Houston State (A)

  11. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Robert, that is the dumbest suggestion I ever saw, lol.

  12. Not there yet Says:

    I know we are all homers so hypothetically let’s say licht scores on an elite defensive end in free agency gets it great d end and find out back for the next 6 years and also even find another safety and corner that could start.

    With this coaching staff in a division where everyone else made the playoffs do honestly think that suddenly that is what they needed to learn how to win close games and practice hard and play harder? That is enough to push one of our rivals out and put this team in?

    Please no more playoff talk

  13. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    All I care about in this draft is them drafting a GOOD RB and DE……….that’s it!

    draft CBs and OLs in the later rounds along with a serviceable DT to replace Mr Softie AKA GMC

  14. Lamarcus Says:

    All Licht needs is to score a elite de

  15. Garv Says:

    He’s right and it’s in Jason’s wheelhouse. ALWAYS build through the draft. NEVER trade away picks unless it’s to move up or down in a draft.

  16. BoJim Says:

    I agree. Great in the draft. In FA? Not so great.

  17. Lord Cornelius Says:


    I can’t play that game because of how unrealistic the rankings are. it’s like they aren’t even trying.

    Quinton Nelson is a top 10 lock probably. Absolute worst case top 15.

    Marcus Davenport is a potential top 15 pick. We’d be lucky to get him in the 2nd given the latest buzz and he seems like a guy that will kill the combine.

    I’m kind of leaning Chubb or trade down at this point. You could trade down and still land a DE of appropriate value (Ferrel/Davenport/Key maybe even); while picking up picks we need

  18. Defense Rules Says:

    @Aristotle … “DL or OLine or a Corner! Stop drafting positions we don’t need!” Thank you, thank you, thank you Aristotle (that handle fits you well). Joe would be perfectly happy with 1 DE and 1 RB … in your own words, “2018 draft successes in those areas alone could make the Bucs a playoff contender. And that’s just two players.”

    Hitting on only 1 DE & 1 RB is a sure ticket to another 5-11 season. Our needs are so much bigger than just that. If Bucs don’t grab at least 2 DEs and 1 DT in the draft to develop, we’ll be sucking hind teet all year long. That’s how bad a shape our DLine is in … it needs a 50% overhaul as a minimum this year.

    Our Secondary is hurting just as bad. Grimes is a FA, with no guarantee whatsoever that he’ll re-sign with us. That leaves us needing 2 starting outside CBs plus we need need at least 1 SS (preferably 2 safeties) to pair with Evans (presuming Bucs keep Conte).

    Yes, our offense needs a fresh RB (not a 28-year-old), but that’d be for naught unless we fix our OLine. And there’s a LOT of fixin- to do there. Hopefully we can re-sign a couple of folks (Evan Smith & Pamphile for experience), but either draft or grab a beastly FA OLineman & let Marpet go back to Right Guard.

    It’s easy to draft BPA (like OJ last year), BUT … drafting to fill your highest priority needs oftentimes has to take precedent for you to be successful on the field. Maybe that’s why 18 teams passed on OJ last year … fantastic player BUT he didn’t match their priority needs.

  19. Onetrickpony Says:

    What , no kicker from FSU ?

  20. Mickelous Says:

    Nelson is the way to go in round one. He will step in immediately at left guard, the position that we’ve been dreadful since Mankins left, and produce for the next 10 – 15 years. Watching his tape he takes care of his guy every down. Dude is an absolute beast.

  21. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “The Bucs are in good hands when April rolls around.” Keep singing that tune Joe. Bucs are 22-42 under his watchful eye in 4 years. Yup, we’re in “good hands”.

  22. SteveK Says:

    Lord Cornelius,

    Great point. I love Chubb, but not sure about Arden Key from LSU. Key seems undersized and the next Barkevious Mingo.

  23. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Licht has had very good drafts…..and he also should get credit for UDFAs…

    Auclair, Barber, Brate, Cross, Elliott, Humphries, Martino and then there’s Bobo & Joe Dirt……

    As far as FA is concerned….I would like to see us choose 2 or 3 players…..and even overpay them as long as they have a strong history of production and aren’t coming off of an injury…….A Center, RB & DE or CB would be good.

    We should pick one of these players @ 7 if they are on the board……Chubb, Barkley or Micah….

  24. LakeLand Says:

    This explains his 22-42 record.

  25. Robert Says:

    bonzai, thanks for the compliment. 🙂

    when in doubt, do what bilicheat or payton would do. there is only one player on each of those teams that are “the man” the rest of the team in interchangeable.

    players are just a number, just like any other worker.

    short of maybe a dozen guys in the last 20 years. i.e. randy moss, d. sanders, revis, a. peterson etc..

  26. Eric Says:

    “the draft is our main meal ticket”

    Says every GM in the league.

    With that kind of ingenuity how can we fail.

  27. LakeLand Says:

    If the Bucs don’t re-sign Charles Sims and Kevin Pamphile. That will leave Mike Evans as the only draftee left from the talented 2014 draft.

  28. Pickgrin Says:

    Stop it DR. Licht’s drafting has been VERY good over his 4 year tenure.

    M. Evans, Pamphile, Winston, D. Smith, Marpet, Kwon, Spence, Howard, J. Evans, Godwin, Beckwith… There’s 11 talented starters drafted in the last 4 years.

    Averaging just under 3 starters per draft over a 4 year period is pretty much killing it regarding NFL drafting

    No reason or evidence to believe that Jason won’t be acquiring more high quality young talent this year.

  29. LakeLand Says:

    The 2014 NFL draft was one of the loaded drafts in years. And the Bucs may go into 2018 with only one player from that draft.

  30. Bucballbaby84 Says:

    Ok so a few days ago I said go after saquon Barkley by any means necessary and I was extremely dumb. We need the most help at pass rush. Then the secondary is the next one on the list. Running back would be next on the list and then offensive line would be next. Go after DE Bradley Chubb if he falls to number 7 if not then go after CB minkah Fitzpatrick. 2nd round go get RB Derrius Guice. Would love it if RB Kerryon Johnson fell to them in the second but it wouldn’t happen. First two rounds only for me so far. Keep the faith buc fans! A few more pieces!

  31. SteveK Says:

    We need to draft 6 linemen and a RB.

    Pick 3 Des and 3 OL, hopefully one from each side of the ball can pan out.

  32. tmaxcon Says:

    you can’t blame licht on free agency it is extremely difficult to recruit quality driven winners to an organization that only knows how to LOSE consistently. tampa is by far the least desirable location in nfl for players. you either grossly overpay or hope you get lucky…. that’s not on licht that is solely on the glazers who have rendered tampa bay buccaneers a complete laughingstock league wide… 4 good years in 42 is hardly a selling point to winners. reality sucks

  33. Gambelero Says:

    Be ready to trade down. A team like Buffalo will sell the house if one of their QB targets is there at 7. If a Chubb or equivalent isn’t available we can trade down and still get one of the best two right tackles or the very best interior oline guy. Use extra 2s and 3s to get edge rushers, corner back, other oline; use extra 4s to get a running back, 0-tech defensive tackle.

  34. rrsrq Says:

    I think that is code for the Bucs will not pursue Demarcus Lawrence or Ziigy Ansah, even though they will likely miss out on Bradley Chubb. Do your homework on Arden Key from LSU, he has the talent but does he have the will. Once again, they will pursue second rate free agents to bridge players we do not have.

  35. SOEbuc Says:

    If we don’t get Chubb or Nelson, I would want to trade down and get Clelin Ferrel and a couple of picks to go with it. Ferrel is a monster (14.5 sacks) and I really believe he could have double digit sacks in the NFL, also.

  36. BrianBucs Says:

    I like most of what Licht does in the draft, but he’s not so good in free agency. Look at all of the teams in the playoffs and you see teams that have gotten there by being active in free agency

  37. Maze Says:

    If the Bucs don’t draft a running back within the top three rounds they deserve what’s coming to them

  38. JonBuc Says:

    Licht’s meal ticket appears to have unlimited credit from the Bros. Glazer. The difference between the 5th pick and now 7th will be huge come draft time. Denver and the Jets both need QBs. The win vs the Saints only gave the Saints an easier playoff match-up…didn’t affect them a bit.

  39. tnew Says:

    Arden Key… likes to play in the 250 pound range. Does not look near as good at 265. Coming off of a shoulder surgery. Specifically, a minimally partially torn labrum. No doubt, but we led the league last year in shoulder injuries (not hyperbole).

    This could be written about Spence, tho Key looks to be a much superior athlete but Spence’s NFL tape is better than Key’s college tape.

    Bucs would need to commit to 3-4 and hope their shoulders hold. I would be extremely nervous with him at 7. If we could trade down and acquire a mid first and mid second for the 7 pick, then rolling the dice might make sense. I think someone will fall in love with him at the combine. The right trainer will turn this guy into superfreak status, so he will most likely come off in the top 15 or earlier picks.

  40. tmaxcon Says:

    keep bashing licht on free agency while you ignore the facts… the facts are NO ONE wants to play for this crapshow franchise… that’s not on licht that is on the glazer clowns… you optimists that drop top tier free agent names are delusional at best… NO ONE will come to this franchise its a career killer playing for glazers but it’s adorable reading the optimists dream in fantasy land that bucs will actual compete for any free agents that are worth a crap. even the second tier free agents that come to bucs that have had previous success regress or fail in tampa… for once it would be refreshing for some of you to attempt to live in reality for a day.

  41. SOEbuc Says:

    If it comes to trading down than spend all your picks through the 4th round on rebuilding the trenches on both sides of the ball. Grimes is going to retire so we also need to bring in 2 CBs, one being a stud (Malcolm Butler, E.J. Gaines, Rashann Melvin) in FA and draft one in the later rounds. Get a RB in the fifth and some UDFA. I have lots of faith in Peyton Barber and a lot more if we could give him an Oline. If necessary we can draft a top-tier RB to go with him in 2019. Most important thing though…BUILD THE TRENCHES!!! GO BUCS!!!

  42. El_Buc941 Says:

    Joe I read an article on MSN that the Bucs would draft OT with their first round pick and finally fix the Donovan Smith problem.thats what happens when you let golf analysts write NFL related

  43. Pa Privateer Says:

    I believe in Licht and his drafts are way better than previous Buc’s GMs.

    Having said that, the 2018 Draft will be very interesting. None of the teams picking in the top 10 will have to reach for any player or position that they need. All of the top 15 players are almost of equal value. None of the positions are overloaded with talented players. There are QBs, RB, OG, OT, DE, FS, SS, CBs, ILB, OLB, DT, that all can carry a top 10 ranking.

    If you study the needs of the top ten teams picking, each team can address their biggest needs without any regrets.

    DE Chubb has a very high percentage of being there at #7.

    Cleveland QB
    Giants QB/OL
    Colts OT
    Cleveland RB/DB
    Broncos QB
    Jets QB/OL
    Bucs DE

    Could DE Chubb go earlier? Yes, but Cleveland doesn’t need a DE, Giants do not need a DE, Colts desperately need to protect Luck, Jets need more offense, Broncos need could take Chubb.

    If any Teams who picks ahead of the Bucs takes DE Chubb, it will cause a huge disruption in the Draft. If Chubb goes ahead of the Bucs, another team will immediately want to trade up for the falling QB, RB, OT, or LB.

    The Bucs are sitting very good this year.

  44. darin Says:

    Firing your terrible coaches is your real meal ticket. Dont think he has that power tho sadly. If the glazers would let licht make all decisions things would be much better.. How many drafts are we gona need to get this terrible coached team to the playoffs? Theres a chance it wont. The talent level in the league is similar from team to team. Coaching wins and loses games. No reason to believe dirk and smitty can outcoach the other teams coaches in just half the games. They both coach a good game here n there, but never in the same game. Lack of practice, preparation, bad game planning and no in game adjustments….sure glazers bring them back another year! Give them an extension while youre at it, maybe in 5 years they will be smarter. Oline Dline and rb licht. Dont let dirk influence your picks over his explosive crush. This staff cant outcoach em so its beat em up or lose.

  45. SOEbuc Says:


    Yeah I wish after every one of these 5-11 seasons the Glazers will sell the Bucs to a franchise that knows how to operate. Players also don’t want to come to the Bucs because of our ugly ass jerseys. I really hope they will change them into some cool looking ones when they are allowed to but I don’t think it’s going to happen. I saw a design that was all pewter with red numbers and trim that looked real bad ass. Pewter top with red numbers and pants would look tight also and of course the classic red top and pewter pants would be awesome.

  46. SOEbuc Says:

    ^^^And different numbers for these uniforms also. Maybe a pirate sword slash type of font if you know what I’m talking about. That’d be cool.^^^

  47. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Perhaps Licht is a little off target.

    “Draft Is Our Main Meal Ticket”

    Maybe he’s soooo focused on the draft he neglects the FA’s. I’ll stick to the meal metaphor…if you’re going out for a fabulous steak dinner then the Filet will of course be the most important item….but the potatoes…and the dessert…and the Martinis will also be very important.

    I agree with Pickgrin…getting three starters out of a draft for consecutive years is good drafting. Let’s say you hit it out of the park for 5 years and got four starters…that’s sti1ll only 20 players…perhaps the core of your talent but far from your team. You must have a strong FA program.

    So let’s look again at Licht….done great in the draft…very well outside the draft with UDFA’s….both college talent…then the team has been horrid in FA…pro talent. AGAIN…fire our NFL pro scouts and find the right guy to identify the proper free agents

  48. denjoe Says:

    Somebody is Drinking, the Kool Aid! We have way too many needs to fix in the draft! Without a great Free agency to supplement it, they don’t have a chance.

  49. Defense Rules Says:

    @Pickgrin … “Stop it DR. Licht’s drafting has been VERY good over his 4 year tenure.
    M. Evans, Pamphile, Winston, D. Smith, Marpet, Kwon, Spence, Howard, J. Evans, Godwin, Beckwith… There’s 11 talented starters drafted in the last 4 years. Averaging just under 3 starters per draft over a 4 year period is pretty much killing it regarding NFL drafting.”

    First off Pickgrin, you might’ve missed the gist of what I was trying to say. My point was that a GM’s PRIMARY function is to provide quality talent … one that can WIN football games. That means, for one thing, identifying PRIORITY NEEDS and drafting to meet those needs. Our DLine is bottom-tier for the most part, and our Secondary is mediocre. Our OLine is average (at best) & our RBs are meh. Thus our losing record during his 4-year tenure. Nice to have lots of WRs & TEs, but guess what … without the ‘beef’ all you’ve got is a plateful of vegetables & mashed potatoes.

    Secondly, never said any of those who you named were not good players or good draft picks (you left out VHIII BTW). BUT … every GM should be expected to hit on 1st or 2nd round picks IMO. And yes, on a certain percentage of 3rd to 7th round picks. So the notion that Licht got 11 starters in 4 years doesn’t really impress me when the record with those starters is 22-42 over his 4-year tenure.

    Combine that with his FA record & his trading record and by my grading scale he’d be a ‘C’ … at best. And I doubt that any SB champion ever made it there with a GM with a ‘C’ rating. Y’all have screamed & yelled at our coaching staff this whole past year, but very very few have pointed the finger towards the source of our REAL problem. So no Pickgrin, I don’t really want to ‘stop it’; not until we get a GM in here who knows how to build a T-E-A-M capable of taking us to the Super Bowl. Licht’s not that GM.

  50. Mike Johnson Says:

    Draft is our mealticket aye licht? Hope you got a huge dinner plate and cash. cause your job depends on it.

  51. Mike Johnson Says:

    I’m laughing so loud here. If you even remotely think..CHUBB is going to be there at our Pick? I got a thousand acre cotton farm to sell you in Miis-sipp-peee! We should have tanked that last game.

  52. Chris Says:

    From the mastermind that picked Aguayo . His entire record, draft, fa, is suspect because of one winning season and nothing but garbage outside of that. Geezus, all you guys stating anyone’s good, front office, scouts coaching gm. We suck, and until we get a squad in who wants to win. The jury’s out on all drafts and fa’s. We accept medocrity.

  53. GhostofSchiano Says:

    Aristotle Says:

    January 12th, 2018 at 10:22 am

    DL or OLine or a Corner! Stop drafting positions we don’t need!


  54. MadMax Says:

    ROFL at the Seinfeld link!! Fave sitcom of all time! Great one Joes!

  55. MadMax Says:

    Btw, Quinn Nordin, K, in the 4th or 5th!

  56. MadMax Says:

    AHHH, nvm, he isnt coming out in the draft yet,

  57. MadMax Says:

    Yeah Mike, Chubb probably wont be there….but Fitz just might be. G Nelson could be there too but I’d rather trade down than reach that high for him. draft or sign a C and move Ali back to his rightful place…..Nelson and Ali as Guards, pick up OT Desmond Harrison in the 5th.

  58. Pepsi Says:

    hate to beat a dead horse, but the decision to trade back into the second for a kicker, and a nickel corner with pick 11, are decisions that permanently stains Licht’s reputation as an intelligent football mind. Do I think he may pick good players? sure, i can set up a computer program to pick our players and it may work out great… but do I feel confident that Licht is smart man and makes good decisions.. no not really. Success of guys who were obviously good like Evans, Winston, Godwin dont effect my perception of Licht’s intelligence or lack thereof. Just hoping he gets us some damn Dline help and get us a new running game..

  59. orlbucfan Says:

    SOEbuc Says:
    January 12th, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    Players also don’t want to come to the Bucs because of our ugly ass jerseys. I really hope they will change them into some cool looking ones when they are allowed to but I don’t think it’s going to happen. I saw a design that was all pewter with red numbers and trim that looked real bad ass. Pewter top with red numbers and pants would look tight also and of course the classic red top and pewter pants would be awesome.
    Amen X 1000!! 🙂 I know zilch about college players so no comment on draft.

  60. LakeLand Says:

    I want to see the Bucs hit pay dirt with these late round draft picks. Especially round 5-7 , those rounds are the rounds where you find value. Not in round 1-3, those guys are expected to do good.

  61. Pickgrin Says:

    DR says:
    “every GM should be expected to hit on 1st or 2nd round picks IMO.”

    Well there’s part of your perception problem right there. NO NFL GM who spends more than a couple years in this league can do that. NONE. ZERO

    1st round picks bust at an average of 46% in the NFL. 2nd rounders bust 50-55% of the time.

    Licht’s “bust” ratio in 4 years as Buccaneer GM is 25% on 1st round picks (0% if you still think VH3 will pull through as a good player which I’m not counting on until I see it) and 33% on 2nd round picks. WELL below the NFL average for picking busts (or well above the average for making good picks – whichever way you want to look at it)

    “identifying PRIORITY NEEDS and drafting to meet those needs” is in fact NOT the best approach to building long term success in the NFL. That strategy leads to reaching in the draft way too often (see Dom’s drafts for reference) and thus ultimately winding up with not enough young talent to build on. (again reference the state of the team when Dom walked out the door).

    With Chubb surely off the board at #7 -that strategy would net us Arden Key instead of a talent like Minkah or Quenton Nelson in this year’s draft asaforinstance.

    Identifying and drafting TALENTED football players who love the game, have cleanish backgrounds and are willing to work hard to be the best they can be – regardless of position(within reason) is how you build a real team that will be good for some time to come.

    Licht drafts more for talent than position and apparently that makes him a terrible GM in your opinion. I disagree strongly as does most anyone who understands that when drafting – going BPA as often as possible based on what any draft is giving you – is for sure the best long term strategy for building a team.

    Its the difference between drafting OJ Howard (a generational TE talent) vs drafting Taco Charlton (the 5th DE off the board) in last year’s draft.

    Or you could reverse it and look at what happened when Licht DID blow off BPA and drafted for dire “need” instead. It netted us Hargreaves instead of Tunsil or Rankins – and Aguayo instead of Vonn Bell…

    Lastly DR – why do you keep hammering on the Buccaneers record while Licht has been GM as something meaningful when the first 2 of Licht’s 4 years here years produced a record of 8-24? Licht had almost nothing to do with that mess and you know it – or should know it. The lack of talent that was on this team when Dom left was shameful as was the coaching job that Lovie Dovie subjected us all to. Also – Licht’s 1st draft was using all of Dom’s scouts and directors…

    Jason Licht is doing a pretty good job of “building” this team whether you agree or not. Most would agree that good drafting is the key to success in this league and GM Licht has met that objective and then some drafting 9 quality starters in the last 3 years (10 if you count VH3 – which again I don’t – not at this point anyway).

  62. Bobby M. Says:

    Gurley was/is a stud RB….He sucked last year. A stud RB is nice but not necessary. Eagles had 3 avg RBs….they had the #1 offense in football. A TRUE franchise QB doesn’t need a pro bowl team to succeed. Improve the line and let Winston prove his worth.

    Licht and company are for the most part screwed if the owners are expecting the playoffs. This team has too many holes, he cant fix them all in the draft and the owenrs aren’t opening the check book for a staff thats on the hot seat. They’ll spend to meet the cap floor requirement, shuffle the deck a bit with new faces but they didn’t spend on Campbell….they didn’t spend for Gruden….they aren’t going to change for a team not even close to a playoff run. Highly unlikely they do better then 3rd in their division.

  63. Pa Privateer Says:

    @ Pickgrin

    I am with you on pretty much all your points.

    GMs cannot hit 100% on every draft pick. The first 2 years that Licht was here was the beginning of a total rebuild. The talent was almost non-existent on the roster.

    Too many fans forget that UDFAs have been a huge boost to our team. ALL of those UDFAs are directly linked to Licht. They are just as important as the 1st ROund draft picks. We have netted a lot of talent in UDFAs.

    With 2 decent pass rushers, I bet VH3 would look a lot better. So would all the DBs. While I agree that Licht MUST address DE this year, I do not think we are quite as void of talent as many wanna-be GMs claim we are.

    It is very early for draft research and predictions, but I believe has a very high percentage of being there at #7 based on the needs of the other teams drafting ahead of us.

    ****watch for Vita Vea to climb the draft rankings, and Barkley to slide

  64. Pa Privateer Says:

    ****Chubb has a very high percentage to be there at #7

  65. Defense Rules Says:

    Pickgrin, obviously we see things differently when it comes to the job Licht has done … your bottom line seems to be that he inherited a mess so he’s not responsible (at least for the 1st 2 years). Using that same logic, obviously Smitty’s not responsible for the defenses lower ranking this year either (since he also inherited a mess). And yet, so many JBF commenters (and others) hold him almost singularly responsible & want him gone. But we won’t call that a double standard.

    And no Pickgrin, I don’t agree that Licht is doing a good job of building this team. You know how I can tell? We’re in LAST PLACE IN THE NFC SOUTH. The other 3 teams in the NFC South are in the playoffs. They’ve gotten much better (combined record of 32-16) while we’ve gotten worse. We’ve got major issues in the DLine & Secondary, and our OLine & RB corps needs some real work. That’s not to say that Licht might not have a gang-busters year in 2018 in the draft & FA … and I for one really hope he does … but I’m still not gonna hold my breath on that.

  66. Pickgrin Says:

    I have respect for your football knowledge and ability to convey it DR. We apparently disagree on the job the GM is currently doing and I guess on how to best build a franchise via the draft as well based on a couple of your comments. That’s cool. I always read your posts (unlike some others – LOL) and know that we agree on a lot of points about the Buccaneers.

    If Chubb is there at #7 like Pa Priv seems to think – then we will ALL be happy. If not – then I’ll be rooting for whoever is at the top of Jasons board and you will be rooting for the 2nd or 3rd best DE I guess.

    I’m actually pretty much all about a trade down this year if the opportunity presents itself – regardless of who is on the board. I’d pass on Chubb in a heartbeat in favor of an extra 2nd and 3rd round pick to move down 10 spots or so.

    Licht would get us some nice players with a mid round 1st, two 2nds and two 3rds – 5 picks in the top 100.

    A big trade down is unlikely – but certainly not impossible with the # of Quarterbacks that are starting to be projected into the top 10 now. Should be an interesting build up to the draft.

  67. Pickgrin Says:

    We agree that it probably makes no sense to dump Smitty. There’s really no scapegoat needed here when it comes to the defense IMO – and thats all Smith’s firing would be.

    Now that the offense has been built up and is in pretty good shape moving forward (still need OG and RB) – it’s time to put some serious attention on bringing in more good Defensive players – (Front and back – LBers are good) and lets see what happens in 2018.

    So many think we are going to suck next year because of retaining Licht, Koetter, Smith et al.

    I think we are much closer than the 2017 record indicated and believe it is very doable for the Bucs to have a winning record in 2018.

  68. Defense Rules Says:

    @Pickgrin … “If Chubb is there at #7 like Pa Priv seems to think – then we will ALL be happy. If not – then I’ll be rooting for whoever is at the top of Jasons board and you will be rooting for the 2nd or 3rd best DE I guess.” You’re right with the 1st part Pickgrin, if Chubb is there we’d ALL be happy. But if he’s gone, I’d be perfectly content with taking a top-ranked CB, or a Center (or OT), or a DT … UNLESS some DE comes along & whoops ’em all at the Combine (and has a very good college resume to go with it of course). I know lots of folks want a RB in the 1st round, but I’m not one of them. Wouldn’t be broken-hearted if we drafted one in the 2nd or 3rd round though IF we’ve addressed at least 1 of our DLine needs before that. DLine AND Secondary are both top priority needs IMO, and if we don’t upgrade the talent on defense then 2018 will resemble 2017. Won’t matter who the coaches are.

    I’m glad the Glazer Boys didn’t fire the coaching staff this year. Koetter & Smitty & the rest of the position coaches are more than qualified to get this team into the playoffs. With me it’s a talent-thing … for now. NFL coaches are like lions chasing a herd of gazelles IMO … attack the slowest, weakest one and you’ll have plenty to eat. Not everyone on a team has to be a superstar, but when you have glaring weaknesses (ya, Fatty Baker playing the run comes to mind) OC’s will attack that point all day long. When you slide help that way, you just created another weak spot. We’ve gotta fix our weaknesses to compete in the NFC South.

  69. Defense Rules Says:

    BTW Pickgrin, I enjoy your comments also … always well thought out & always give me something to think about. That’s one of the things that I enjoy about JBF … commenters like StPete, Lakeland, Tampabaybucfan, CobraBoy & many others always find a way to get me thinking. That’s what makes JBF fun IMO. Oh, and Joe too BTW … he’s got a very unique way of ‘chumming’ (as I call it) that keeps us JBF commenters nibbling at the bait.

  70. LakeLand Says:

    Defense Rules

    I agree with 99% of your comments

  71. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    The only Pass rusher worth drafting in the first round of 2018 is Bradley Chubb who will almost assuredly not make it past the Colts.

    If Saquon Barkley is gone, Our only 2 options should be Quenton Nelson, who would immediately transform our O-line from slightly below average to the verge of being elite. And Minkah Fitzpatrick, who is the clear cut best DB in the entire draft.

  72. Pickgrin Says:

    “DLine AND Secondary are both top priority needs IMO, and if we don’t upgrade the talent on defense then 2018 will resemble 2017”

    Agree again DR. DL is top priority for improvement. Need to bring in at least 3 if not 4 new faces up front on defense. We also need another talented CB IF Grimes stays – if he doesn’t we need 2 talented CBs. Also another good Safety but Conte/Tandy might have to suffice for 1 more year along with young J. Evans who looked pretty good as a rookie..

    Beyond that we need to upgrade at least 1 OG spot and get another Center – or we need 2 OG upgrades if Marpet is to stay at Center. Also a developmental OT as Dotson is getting old and Benenoch did not look that great when he got his chance. Need a high end RB as well – but that might have to wait for next year’s draft unless they find a good RB in FA this year. A 4th or 5th rd RB would be worth a shot if there’s one on the board they like at that point.

  73. NFLNut Says:


    If Saquon and Bradley Chubb are off the board I want either QUENTEON NELSON or a trade down with the Bills for their #21 and #22 picks.

    I really like the idea of a trade down as with both the #21 and #22 picks we could get:

    OT/C or C/DE or DE/DE or RB/DE or RB/OT, etc., etc., etc.,.

    This team has a ton of holes so I really think a trade down makes a ton of sense as it just so happens that a super QB-hungry team has two picks that represent almost exact even trade value for our #7 pick!

    If we can trade down and we don’t and just draft an Arden Key or Clellin Ferrel I will consider that a fire-able offence.

    We could draft Orlando Brown and Billy Price and our O-Line would be set for the next 5-10 years … we could draft Sam Hubbard and Maurice Hurst and our D-Line would become a massive strength … I LOVE Quenton Nelson but a TRADE DOWN seems like the smartest and best thing to do!


  74. NFLNut Says:


    The #7 pick is worth 1,500 while the #21 and #22 are worth a total of 1,580, however teams often pay premiums if they’re trading up for a QUARTERBACK rather than any other position.

    #21 and #22 for #7 would work just fine … and I think the Bills would do it as there is no way they will get to #5-6 as those two teams also need QBs and there’s no way they’ll get to #1-4 as the #21-22 picks aren’t valuable enough to jump that high.

    The above said, I have little doubt the Bills would do the #21 and #22 for the #7 so they can get their QB of the future which would likely be either Mayfield, Allen, Jackson or maybe even Mason Rudolph (who CBS sports I think is projecting could go #1 overall while Kiper & McShay have a 2nd round grade on him at best … strange).

    Again, if Saquon or Chubb are available at #7, DRAFT em … if they’re both gone and we really want Quenton Nelson, DRAFT him … but if we turn down the #21 and #22 picks just to take a risk on a different DE like Key, I’m going to be very disappointed.


  75. godzilla13 Says:

    As the debater deepens as to who the Buccaneers will draft. Defense has to be the priority. There are serious depth issues with the DE/DT and CB position groups. Below are the current signed players for the three groups. Five CB’s with one starter, six DE’s with two starters and three DT with one starter. The Bucs need to re-sign Brent Grimes and add a starting CB in FA. Also a starting DE and a starting DT in FA.

    1 CB Vernon Hargreaves $3,866,634
    2 CB Josh Robinson $1,875,000
    3 CB Ryan Smith $778,040
    4 CB Maurice Fleming $480,000
    5 CB David Rivers III $480,000

    1 DE William Gholston $6,500,000
    2 DE Robert Ayers $6,000,000
    3 DE Noah Spence $1,646,264
    4 DE Davonte Lambert $630,000
    5 DE Pat O’Connor $555,000
    6 DE Channing Ward $555,000

    1 DT Gerald McCoy $12,750,000
    2 DT Chris Baker $4,875,000
    3 DT Stevie Tu’ikolovatu $577,783